Ongoing Projects

Enter Title

Children and Youth in Cities, A Lifestyle Evaluation Survey (CYCLES) for Sustainability

** NEW ** To learn more about this project, read the article "Sustainable consumption and lifestyles? Children and youth in cities" co-authored by UNEP, published in the 2013 World Social Science Report: Changing Global Environments.

CYCLES for Sustainability is a project proposal developed by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Sustainable Lifestyles Research Group (SLRG) led by Professor Tim Jackson at the University of Surrey (UK). This project builds on and improves the model set by the Global Survey on Sustainable Lifestyles (GSSL), a project led by UNEP and the International Task Force on Sustainable Lifestyles between 2009 and 2011 in the framework of the Marrakech Process on Sustainable Consumption and Production.

The objective is to launch a global pilot survey focused on children and youth (12-24 years old) aimed at:

  • Exploring the way children and youth from different parts of the world perceive, envision and shape sustainable lifestyles, while envisioning future trends in consumers aspirations, practices and behaviors;
  • Identifying key drivers and obstacles for urban sustainable lifestyles solutions (social norms, policies and economic instruments, infrastructures, etc.) and exploring the conditions and potential for change, looking at intended and unintended impacts; 
  • Developing robust measures of the impacts of current policies, initiatives or interventions, while analyzing the implication for future policy development and implementation, providing comparative national and regional insights to inform policy and planning by governments, NGO’s and the business sector.
  • Build the research capability of a network of international collaborators sharing methods, results, and insights to inform effective, targeted policy practice.

This analysis will provide a solid background for an in-depth, qualitative and projective survey focused on understanding children and youth’s perceptions, behaviors and aspirations with regards to sustainable lifestyles. The questionnaire will be based on age appropriate open questions and inspiring exercises involving multimedia and interactive materials, designed to give priority to children and youth’s free expression. The questionnaire will focus on:

  • Self reported and material measures of well-being (in collaboration with other studies);
  • Aspirations, hopes dreams and fears about best and worst ways of living;
  • Attitudes and experiences with regard to the 4 focus areas of the survey: home-life, food, mobility, leisure and communication;
  • Reactions to scenarios or city case studies for sustainable lifestyles, perceived drivers and obstacles to change.

For more information on this project proposal and tentative next steps, please download the Draft Concept Note of this project proposal.